Access trusted expertise and enjoy the backcountry with confidence.


Backpacking Light Membership helps hikers and other backcountry enthusiasts research gear, learn and master outdoor skills, plan trips, and share ideas. Find trustworthy information, comprehensive online education, and generous community, so you can spend more quality time outdoors and less time, money, and energy trying to figure out how. Access the original – and most trusted – ultralight backpacking guides, educators, product designers, engineers, and scientists in the outdoor industry.

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Years Helping Hikers


Articles & Videos


Active Members


Forum Topics



$7 /  year

Community (Post to Forums, Gear Swap, Gear Reviews, Trip Reports, and Blogs)

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$27 /  year Most Popular

Community + Article Library Access (2,500+ articles, 4.5+ million words)

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$137 /  year Best Value

Community + Article Library Access + Online Courses + More

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Zero-risk: Love membership - or get your money back.   View details

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Forum Posting Basic Premium Unlimited
Content Favoriting Basic Premium Unlimited
Post Member Articles Basic Premium Unlimited
Gear Swap Basic Premium Unlimited
User Reviews Basic Premium Unlimited
Live Q&A Events Basic Premium Unlimited
Article Library Basic Premium Unlimited
Online Courses Basic Premium Unlimited
Earlybird Signups Basic Premium Unlimited
No Ads Basic Premium Unlimited
Video Podcasts Basic Premium Unlimited
Pricing BASIC

$7 /  year

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$27 /  year

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$137 /  year

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Our impact: helping hikers and institutions achieve their outdoor goals.

Backpacking Light has helped me tune my gear so I carry a lighter load but still have the comforts that make the trip enjoyable for me. I particularly like the in-depth analysis of gear such as the stove research.

Michael Woodside, Chattanooga TN

Backpacking Light gave me the knowledge I needed to confidently undertake a 900 mile PCT section hike. That hike changed my life, I can’t thank Backpacking Light enough for that.

Karen Kennedy, Alstonville NSW Australia

Backpacking Light's expertise was absolutely invaluable to NOLS when we started our Lightweight Backpacking Program. Ryan was quick to understand our programmatic needs and provide workable solutions and suggestions to ensure we were able to meet our lightweight goals.

Gary Cukjati, Lander WY

Backpacking Light connected me with the thinkers and tinkerers in the industry. It let me learn from the thought leaders in the area, and to contribute to the community.

Glen Van Peski, Bend OR

Backpacking Light Founder Ryan Jordan has been named one of the most influential Outdoor Ambassadors of the past 100 years: “An engineer by training, Jordan layered scientific method with a penchant for backpacking to change the way we evaluate choosing gear.”

Gear Junkie

Backpacking Light is home to the most fanatic pound-shedders on the planet!

Los Angeles Times
Feature Overview

Forum Posting

Post in our member forums, which feature over 150,000+ topics and more than one million posts.

Content Favoriting

Bookmark, save, and organize site content in your account favorites.

Post Member Articles

Post your own article content to our community including trip reports and blog posts.

Gear Swap

Buy, sell, and trade gear on our Gear Swap.

User Reviews

Post your own member gear reviews.

Live Q&A Events

Live online video Q&A events, where we address specific topics via a short keynote address, solicit questions about that topic, and include an open Q&A for any other questions. All events are recorded and accessible to all active members.

Article Library

Access every article in our library - more than 4.5 million words in 2,500+ articles and growing. Gear, Skills, Test Reports, Stories, Issues, and more.

Online Courses

Get unlimited access to all online courses - webinars, masterclasses, video podcasts and more.

Earlybird Signups

Unlimited Members get early access to ticketed live events and guided trek enrollment.

No Ads

Unlimited Members enjoy an ad-free browsing experience.

Video Podcasts

Unlimited Members get access to the video version of the Backpacking Light Podcast.


Our Promise

Backpacking Light Membership comes with a 100%, money-back guarantee. A lot of companies say they offer this, but then attach conditions, asterisks, and fine print. We don’t do that. This guarantee is serious because we want to have a meaningful relationship with you, and a meaningful impact on your life.

Your Membership is guaranteed for its duration: if you purchase an annual membership, you can request a refund anytime before it expires. If you want a refund, drop a note to our Customer Support Team at [email protected] or call us at 406-640-HIKE, and you’ll have your money back within one business day, no-questions-asked.

Ryan and Stephanie Jordan

Frequently Asked Questions

What are your company's core values?

Great question. We acknowledge that some people will only spend money with companies that have values that resonate with them. You can review our company core values here.

Do you offer a money-back guarantee?

Yes! If isn’t for you, no hard feelings. We offer a 100%, no-questions-asked, money-back guarantee for all membership types, courses, and treks.

What types of payment do you accept?

Credit card (processed via Stripe Secure Payments) or Paypal!

Will you keep my email address and personal information secure?

Absolutely! Under no circumstance do we ever divulge or sell your personal information, including your email address, to any third party, partner, advertiser, etc. Feel free to review our policies in detail.

Is my credit card information secure?

Yes! We use only the most reputable and secure encryption technologies, including 2048-bit (or higher) SSL when transmitting your payment information, one of the most secure payment gateways on the planet (Stripe), and fully-PCI compliant servers. And we don’t store any of your payment information on our servers.

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